A Lady's Ruminations

"Jane was firm where she felt herself to be right." -Jane Austen, Pride and Prejudice

Sunday, January 29, 2006


On Friday, Trisha and I saw the new film Annapolis. It is the story of a young man named Jake Huard (played by James Franco), who works at the shipyards across from the United States Naval Academy at Annapolis. Growing up, he had promised his mother he would attend, but he's on the wait list and everyone thinks it's an impossible dream.

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The day before the new school year begins, Jake finds out he has been accepted. Jake hasn't had the months the others have to prepare and study, so he finds himself out of his league. An amateur boxer, he is in excellent shape, but his lack of knowledge impact his fellow plebes negatively. Jake is too proud to ask for help. The thing he most excells at is boxing, but that joy is curtailed when he gets in a bit of a scuffle with a superior. Will Jake give up and quit? Or realize he must take responsibility?

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Critics haven't liked this movie, but I thought it was excellent. It was patriotic, but not overpoweringly so. It wasn't an anti-war, anti-military movie, by any means.

Rather, it reminds us that we have responsibilities and must work together to get tough jobs done. Excuses don't cut it. Military life isn't always easy or fun or friendly. But the men who emerge from their rigorous training are prepared to deal with the most difficult things. Would we want officers who flee at the first sign of danger or go so easy on their men that nothing gets done? Midshipmen at the Naval Academy are taught to live with honor, integrity, and responsibility. Would that more Americans took on those characteristics.

Such characteristics, and the admonishments to internazlie them, are, I daresay, the reason why critics won't like this movie. They prefer garbage like Brokeback Mountain or Syriana. People don't want to be reminded of how far they are from being that upright and moral. Very sad.

As I have never been to the Naval Academy, I cannot speak for all the little details. I do, however, recommend seeing Annapolis. It is entertaining and goes by very quickly. Annapolis also stars Tyrese Gibson, Jordana Brewster, and Donnie Wahlberg.

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